CHENNAI: Taking a serious view of the lack of protection for water bodies, the Madras High Court on Tuesday directed all District Collectors in the state to collect satellite images of them as well as public lands and upload these on their websites in two weeks.
The court also directed that the master data of the entire state should be submitted to the Chief Secretary of the state government and the High Court registry.
The issue pertains to the public interest litigation moved by K Shanmugasundaram, the President of Iyarkai Valam Matrum Perumpalla Odai Padukappu Nala Sangam, Erode, seeking direction to the authorities to refrain from disturbing or altering the Perupalla Odai in Kathirampatti village in the name of the Erode Smart City scheme.
The petitioner alleged that the authorities were encroaching the odai and taking steps to acquire both sides of it, which would affect the free flow of water. The petitioner sought an interim stay to the entire proceedings.
However, the counsel for the state sought time to file a detailed report on the entire matter.
The first bench comprising Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice Senthilkumar Ramamoorthy that heard the petition directed all the district collectors of the state to collect satellite images of water bodies and public lands in every taluk as on March 15 and upload them on their websites by March 17.
The court also said the master data regarding the entire state has to be collected and forwarded to the Chief Secretary. Besides, a copy in PDF format should be sent to the Registrar General of the Madras High Court to be preserved as a reference in future matters.
The court adjourned the plea for four weeks, directing the state to file a detailed reply to the plea.